Most of take for granted everyday tasks like catching a bus or popping into a shop, don't we? But for people with disabilities these can be big challenges. Well, a group in Bridgend has been speaking out about their struggles. It's calling for more awareness and changes in attitudes in the community. Alexandra Lodge reports.
A man from Bridgend who crashed his car and caused his passenger serious injury while driving over the legal alcohol limit, without a license and without insurance has been sent to a young offenders institute.
John Watson, 20, lost control of the car he was driving on 19 August last year, crashing into a double garage in Bryncethin.
His passenger, also a 20-year-old local man, sustained very serious injuries.
Watson was sentenced to 32 months imprisonment in a young offenders institute, and disqualified from driving for five years for causing serious injury by dangerous driving.
He was also given a consecutive sentence of 52 weeks for drugs-related offences, meaning that his total sentence is 44 months imprisonment.
Inspector Carwyn Evans from South Wales Police said: "This was a very serious incident and the sentence is a stark warning to anyone else considering driving in this manner."
A landowner who created an illegal rubbish pile so big that it changed the landscape of a village in has been jailed.
Terrence Davies, 54, was sentenced to two and a half years in prison, after admitting four charges of operating without consent.
He earned nearly £300,000 by taking customers' rubbish, in just 14 months.
His operation was just 500 yards from a site of Special Scientific Interest in the village of South Cornelly, near Bridgend.
Cardiff Crown Court heard that Davies was told he needed planning permission to run the business, and warned no more waste should enter the site - but more waste was then buried.
Judge Neil Bidder said: "the mounds of waste were 30 metres high and up to 40 metres wide and resembled large hills. Some of it was deposited while you were on bail and after you had been warned time and time again."
"It was outrageous offending. The total volume of waste was huge and the remedial cost will be enormous."
The court heard his assets totalled £23,517, which he has been ordered to hand over within six months or face a further 14 months in prison.
Cardiff and Bridgend were just two communities in Wales today where residents joined forces for the annual Big Lunch project.
The initiative brings neighbourhoods together for a few hours of food, friendship and fun.
With an anticipated two million more single-person households by 2019, the Big Lunch also aims to combat social isolation and loneliness by encouraging neighbours to get to know each other.
The first Big Lunch was held in 2009 and has grown in popularity, with more than 3.5 million people across Britain taking to their streets, gardens and community spaces last year.
It is organised by The Eden Project and funded by the Big Lottery Fund. The project also boasts Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, as Patron.
The health board of the hospital where Michael Bowen died said it had made several improvements to its service in the wake of the patient's death following a four-hour wait in an ambulance.
Following a coroner's conclusion that Mr Bowen did not because of the delay, the Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board released a statement highlighting changes it had made, including:
- Strengthening the protocol over how patients should be managed in the event of delays admitting patients from ambulances
- Reviewing its escalation policy during busy times
- Investing around £1.5 million in new schemes and additional staff
- Planning to invest £500,000 in new community-based staff to reduce the number of emergency admissions of frail, older people.
"We wish to extend our deepest condolences to Mr Bowen’s family for their very sad loss," the statement added.
A coroner has concluded that a patient who was forced to wait more than four hours in an ambulance outside a hospital did not die because of the delay.
Michael Bowen died at the Princess of Wales Hospital in Bridgend, South Wales, in January.
The coroner, Andrew Barkley, concluded his death was caused by thrombosis of his liver, which led to a seizure.
Recording a narrative verdict, he said: "I don't believe on balance the delay made any significant difference to the ultimate outcome.
"It does not appear the delays, as unsatisfactory as they were, caused or contributed to his death."
He said he was satisfied the Abertawe Bro Morgannwg Health Board had taken steps to ensure similar incidents could not happen again.
The solicitor for Mr Bowen's family said the verdict was not a surprise based on the evidence, and that they drew comfort from the lessons that have been learnt by the hospital.
An inquest into the death of a man who died at Princess of Wales Hospital in Bridgend after waiting four hours in an ambulance has returned a narrative conclusion.
The wait did not cause or contribute to Michael Bowen's death, a coroner ruled.
A patient who died after waiting more than four hours to be admitted to A&E may not have survived if he had been diagnosed sooner, an inquest has heard.
Michael Bowen died at the Princess of Wales Hospital in Bridgend, South Wales in January. He had arrived in an ambulance but there was no room for him at the hospital, the court was told.
He was suffering from complications associated with liver disease, and died following a seizure three hours after finally being admitted.
The consultant on duty, Dr Matthew Jones, was asked if he thought the delay in diagnosis contributed to his death.
"I don't believe so," he said. "If the diagnosis was made earlier, it would not necessarily have made any difference."
A nurse at the hospital where Michael Bowen died says she believed there was "no difference" in the level of care he received after being kept in an ambulance outside hospital.
ITV News' Ben Chapman reports from Mr Bowen's inquest:
Nurse: it is "quite common" for there to be no space in A&E at Princess of Wales Hospital depending on time of year and time of day.
She says she believed the ambulance was "the safest place for him". She says there was "no difference" in level of care to being admitted.
Nurse says she was concerned about capacity issues. "It is a danger to everyone walking through the doors. It puts everyone at risk."
A nurse at the inquest into the death of Michael Bowen - a man who died after waiting in an ambulance outside hospital for several hours - has explained that she made the decision to remove him from accident and emergency as there was "no space" for him.
ITV News' Ben Chapman reports:
Nurse says "there was no space" for Michael Bowen as a major need patient, so she decided to put him back on the ambulance outside.